• April 2, 2020

Smoking frozen out

An Icelandic doctor has credited vaping with contributing to a dramatic decline in the number of smokers in Iceland, according to a story by Paul Fontaine for grapevine.is.

Guðmundur Karl Snæbjörnsson described vaping as “a great blessing” for Icelanders’ health.

In 2014, 14 percent of the population or 35,000 people self-identified as smokers, figures that had fallen to nine percent and 22,000 by 2017.

The 37 percent drop in the number of smokers was attributable in part to an increase in vaping, Guðmundur told reporters.

Cigarette sales had dropped by 50 percent from 2008 to 2017, while vaping had been on the rise, and now, about 20,000 Icelanders vaped daily or less frequently.

“Smoking has been falling like a rock like we’ve never seen before,” Guðmundur was reported to have said. “The biggest contributing factors have been mouth-tobacco and vaping, which have clearly been wiping smoking out.”

Iceland currently has no clearly defined laws about the contents, sale and distribution of vaping products.

Although a bill was introduced last year that set limits on e-fluid strength and quantities; that bill was strongly opposed by vape shop owners and ended up dying in committee.